3.2. ESTABLISHING DATA CONNECTIONS The mechanics of transferring data consists of setting up the data connection to the appropriate ports and choosing the parameters for transfer. Both the user and the server-DTPs have a default data port. The user-process default data port is the same as the control connection port (i.e., U). The server-process default data port is the port adjacent to the control connection port (i.e., L-1). The transfer byte size is 8-bit bytes. This byte size is relevant only for the actual transfer of the data; it has no bearing on representation of the data within a host's file system. The passive data transfer process (this may be a user-DTP or a second server-DTP) shall "listen" on the data port prior to sending a transfer request command. The FTP request command determines the direction of the data transfer. The server, upon receiving the transfer request, will initiate the data connection to the port. When the connection is established, the data transfer begins between DTP's, and the server-PI sends a confirming reply to the user-PI. Every FTP implementation must support the use of the default data ports, and only the USER-PI can initiate a change to non-default ports. It is possible for the user to specify an alternate data port by use of the PORT command. The user may want a file dumped on a TAC line printer or retrieved from a third party host. In the latter case, the user-PI sets up control connections with both server-PI's. One server is then told (by an FTP command) to "listen" for a connection which the other will initiate. The user-PI sends one server-PI a PORT command indicating the data port of the other. Finally, both are sent the appropriate transfer commands. The exact sequence of commands and replies sent between the user-controller and the servers is defined in the Section on FTP Replies. In general, it is the server's responsibility to maintain the data connection--to initiate it and to close it. The exception to this
is when the user-DTP is sending the data in a transfer mode that requires the connection to be closed to indicate EOF. The server MUST close the data connection under the following conditions: 1. The server has completed sending data in a transfer mode that requires a close to indicate EOF. 2. The server receives an ABORT command from the user. 3. The port specification is changed by a command from the user. 4. The control connection is closed legally or otherwise. 5. An irrecoverable error condition occurs. Otherwise the close is a server option, the exercise of which the server must indicate to the user-process by either a 250 or 226 reply only. 3.3. DATA CONNECTION MANAGEMENT Default Data Connection Ports: All FTP implementations must support use of the default data connection ports, and only the User-PI may initiate the use of non-default ports. Negotiating Non-Default Data Ports: The User-PI may specify a non-default user side data port with the PORT command. The User-PI may request the server side to identify a non-default server side data port with the PASV command. Since a connection is defined by the pair of addresses, either of these actions is enough to get a different data connection, still it is permitted to do both commands to use new ports on both ends of the data connection. Reuse of the Data Connection: When using the stream mode of data transfer the end of the file must be indicated by closing the connection. This causes a problem if multiple files are to be transfered in the session, due to need for TCP to hold the connection record for a time out period to guarantee the reliable communication. Thus the connection can not be reopened at once. There are two solutions to this problem. The first is to negotiate a non-default port. The second is to use another transfer mode. A comment on transfer modes. The stream transfer mode is
inherently unreliable, since one can not determine if the connection closed prematurely or not. The other transfer modes (Block, Compressed) do not close the connection to indicate the end of file. They have enough FTP encoding that the data connection can be parsed to determine the end of the file. Thus using these modes one can leave the data connection open for multiple file transfers. 3.4. TRANSMISSION MODES The next consideration in transferring data is choosing the appropriate transmission mode. There are three modes: one which formats the data and allows for restart procedures; one which also compresses the data for efficient transfer; and one which passes the data with little or no processing. In this last case the mode interacts with the structure attribute to determine the type of processing. In the compressed mode, the representation type determines the filler byte. All data transfers must be completed with an end-of-file (EOF) which may be explicitly stated or implied by the closing of the data connection. For files with record structure, all the end-of-record markers (EOR) are explicit, including the final one. For files transmitted in page structure a "last-page" page type is used. NOTE: In the rest of this section, byte means "transfer byte" except where explicitly stated otherwise. For the purpose of standardized transfer, the sending host will translate its internal end of line or end of record denotation into the representation prescribed by the transfer mode and file structure, and the receiving host will perform the inverse translation to its internal denotation. An IBM Mainframe record count field may not be recognized at another host, so the end-of-record information may be transferred as a two byte control code in Stream mode or as a flagged bit in a Block or Compressed mode descriptor. End-of-line in an ASCII or EBCDIC file with no record structure should be indicated by <CRLF> or <NL>, respectively. Since these transformations imply extra work for some systems, identical systems transferring non-record structured text files might wish to use a binary representation and stream mode for the transfer.
The following transmission modes are defined in FTP: 3.4.1. STREAM MODE The data is transmitted as a stream of bytes. There is no restriction on the representation type used; record structures are allowed. In a record structured file EOR and EOF will each be indicated by a two-byte control code. The first byte of the control code will be all ones, the escape character. The second byte will have the low order bit on and zeros elsewhere for EOR and the second low order bit on for EOF; that is, the byte will have value 1 for EOR and value 2 for EOF. EOR and EOF may be indicated together on the last byte transmitted by turning both low order bits on (i.e., the value 3). If a byte of all ones was intended to be sent as data, it should be repeated in the second byte of the control code. If the structure is a file structure, the EOF is indicated by the sending host closing the data connection and all bytes are data bytes. 3.4.2. BLOCK MODE The file is transmitted as a series of data blocks preceded by one or more header bytes. The header bytes contain a count field, and descriptor code. The count field indicates the total length of the data block in bytes, thus marking the beginning of the next data block (there are no filler bits). The descriptor code defines: last block in the file (EOF) last block in the record (EOR), restart marker (see the Section on Error Recovery and Restart) or suspect data (i.e., the data being transferred is suspected of errors and is not reliable). This last code is NOT intended for error control within FTP. It is motivated by the desire of sites exchanging certain types of data (e.g., seismic or weather data) to send and receive all the data despite local errors (such as "magnetic tape read errors"), but to indicate in the transmission that certain portions are suspect). Record structures are allowed in this mode, and any representation type may be used. The header consists of the three bytes. Of the 24 bits of header information, the 16 low order bits shall represent byte count, and the 8 high order bits shall represent descriptor codes as shown below.
Block Header +----------------+----------------+----------------+ | Descriptor | Byte Count | | 8 bits | 16 bits | +----------------+----------------+----------------+ The descriptor codes are indicated by bit flags in the descriptor byte. Four codes have been assigned, where each code number is the decimal value of the corresponding bit in the byte. Code Meaning 128 End of data block is EOR 64 End of data block is EOF 32 Suspected errors in data block 16 Data block is a restart marker With this encoding, more than one descriptor coded condition may exist for a particular block. As many bits as necessary may be flagged. The restart marker is embedded in the data stream as an integral number of 8-bit bytes representing printable characters in the language being used over the control connection (e.g., default--NVT-ASCII). <SP> (Space, in the appropriate language) must not be used WITHIN a restart marker. For example, to transmit a six-character marker, the following would be sent: +--------+--------+--------+ |Descrptr| Byte count | |code= 16| = 6 | +--------+--------+--------+ +--------+--------+--------+ | Marker | Marker | Marker | | 8 bits | 8 bits | 8 bits | +--------+--------+--------+ +--------+--------+--------+ | Marker | Marker | Marker | | 8 bits | 8 bits | 8 bits | +--------+--------+--------+
3.4.3. COMPRESSED MODE There are three kinds of information to be sent: regular data, sent in a byte string; compressed data, consisting of replications or filler; and control information, sent in a two-byte escape sequence. If n>0 bytes (up to 127) of regular data are sent, these n bytes are preceded by a byte with the left-most bit set to 0 and the right-most 7 bits containing the number n. Byte string: 1 7 8 8 +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ |0| n | | d(1) | ... | d(n) | +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ ^ ^ |---n bytes---| of data String of n data bytes d(1),..., d(n) Count n must be positive. To compress a string of n replications of the data byte d, the following 2 bytes are sent: Replicated Byte: 2 6 8 +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ |1 0| n | | d | +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ A string of n filler bytes can be compressed into a single byte, where the filler byte varies with the representation type. If the type is ASCII or EBCDIC the filler byte is <SP> (Space, ASCII code 32, EBCDIC code 64). If the type is Image or Local byte the filler is a zero byte. Filler String: 2 6 +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ |1 1| n | +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ The escape sequence is a double byte, the first of which is the
escape byte (all zeros) and the second of which contains descriptor codes as defined in Block mode. The descriptor codes have the same meaning as in Block mode and apply to the succeeding string of bytes. Compressed mode is useful for obtaining increased bandwidth on very large network transmissions at a little extra CPU cost. It can be most effectively used to reduce the size of printer files such as those generated by RJE hosts. 3.5. ERROR RECOVERY AND RESTART There is no provision for detecting bits lost or scrambled in data transfer; this level of error control is handled by the TCP. However, a restart procedure is provided to protect users from gross system failures (including failures of a host, an FTP-process, or the underlying network). The restart procedure is defined only for the block and compressed modes of data transfer. It requires the sender of data to insert a special marker code in the data stream with some marker information. The marker information has meaning only to the sender, but must consist of printable characters in the default or negotiated language of the control connection (ASCII or EBCDIC). The marker could represent a bit-count, a record-count, or any other information by which a system may identify a data checkpoint. The receiver of data, if it implements the restart procedure, would then mark the corresponding position of this marker in the receiving system, and return this information to the user. In the event of a system failure, the user can restart the data transfer by identifying the marker point with the FTP restart procedure. The following example illustrates the use of the restart procedure. The sender of the data inserts an appropriate marker block in the data stream at a convenient point. The receiving host marks the corresponding data point in its file system and conveys the last known sender and receiver marker information to the user, either directly or over the control connection in a 110 reply (depending on who is the sender). In the event of a system failure, the user or controller process restarts the server at the last server marker by sending a restart command with server's marker code as its argument. The restart command is transmitted over the control
connection and is immediately followed by the command (such as RETR, STOR or LIST) which was being executed when the system failure occurred. 4. FILE TRANSFER FUNCTIONS The communication channel from the user-PI to the server-PI is established as a TCP connection from the user to the standard server port. The user protocol interpreter is responsible for sending FTP commands and interpreting the replies received; the server-PI interprets commands, sends replies and directs its DTP to set up the data connection and transfer the data. If the second party to the data transfer (the passive transfer process) is the user-DTP, then it is governed through the internal protocol of the user-FTP host; if it is a second server-DTP, then it is governed by its PI on command from the user-PI. The FTP replies are discussed in the next section. In the description of a few of the commands in this section, it is helpful to be explicit about the possible replies. 4.1. FTP COMMANDS 4.1.1. ACCESS CONTROL COMMANDS The following commands specify access control identifiers (command codes are shown in parentheses). USER NAME (USER) The argument field is a Telnet string identifying the user. The user identification is that which is required by the server for access to its file system. This command will normally be the first command transmitted by the user after the control connections are made (some servers may require this). Additional identification information in the form of a password and/or an account command may also be required by some servers. Servers may allow a new USER command to be entered at any point in order to change the access control and/or accounting information. This has the effect of flushing any user, password, and account information already supplied and beginning the login sequence again. All transfer parameters are unchanged and any file transfer in progress is completed under the old access control parameters.
PASSWORD (PASS) The argument field is a Telnet string specifying the user's password. This command must be immediately preceded by the user name command, and, for some sites, completes the user's identification for access control. Since password information is quite sensitive, it is desirable in general to "mask" it or suppress typeout. It appears that the server has no foolproof way to achieve this. It is therefore the responsibility of the user-FTP process to hide the sensitive password information. ACCOUNT (ACCT) The argument field is a Telnet string identifying the user's account. The command is not necessarily related to the USER command, as some sites may require an account for login and others only for specific access, such as storing files. In the latter case the command may arrive at any time. There are reply codes to differentiate these cases for the automation: when account information is required for login, the response to a successful PASSword command is reply code 332. On the other hand, if account information is NOT required for login, the reply to a successful PASSword command is 230; and if the account information is needed for a command issued later in the dialogue, the server should return a 332 or 532 reply depending on whether it stores (pending receipt of the ACCounT command) or discards the command, respectively. CHANGE WORKING DIRECTORY (CWD) This command allows the user to work with a different directory or dataset for file storage or retrieval without altering his login or accounting information. Transfer parameters are similarly unchanged. The argument is a pathname specifying a directory or other system dependent file group designator. CHANGE TO PARENT DIRECTORY (CDUP) This command is a special case of CWD, and is included to simplify the implementation of programs for transferring directory trees between operating systems having different
syntaxes for naming the parent directory. The reply codes shall be identical to the reply codes of CWD. See Appendix II for further details. STRUCTURE MOUNT (SMNT) This command allows the user to mount a different file system data structure without altering his login or accounting information. Transfer parameters are similarly unchanged. The argument is a pathname specifying a directory or other system dependent file group designator. REINITIALIZE (REIN) This command terminates a USER, flushing all I/O and account information, except to allow any transfer in progress to be completed. All parameters are reset to the default settings and the control connection is left open. This is identical to the state in which a user finds himself immediately after the control connection is opened. A USER command may be expected to follow. LOGOUT (QUIT) This command terminates a USER and if file transfer is not in progress, the server closes the control connection. If file transfer is in progress, the connection will remain open for result response and the server will then close it. If the user-process is transferring files for several USERs but does not wish to close and then reopen connections for each, then the REIN command should be used instead of QUIT. An unexpected close on the control connection will cause the server to take the effective action of an abort (ABOR) and a logout (QUIT). 4.1.2. TRANSFER PARAMETER COMMANDS All data transfer parameters have default values, and the commands specifying data transfer parameters are required only if the default parameter values are to be changed. The default value is the last specified value, or if no value has been specified, the standard default value is as stated here. This implies that the server must "remember" the applicable default values. The commands may be in any order except that they must precede the FTP service request. The following commands specify data transfer parameters:
DATA PORT (PORT) The argument is a HOST-PORT specification for the data port to be used in data connection. There are defaults for both the user and server data ports, and under normal circumstances this command and its reply are not needed. If this command is used, the argument is the concatenation of a 32-bit internet host address and a 16-bit TCP port address. This address information is broken into 8-bit fields and the value of each field is transmitted as a decimal number (in character string representation). The fields are separated by commas. A port command would be: PORT h1,h2,h3,h4,p1,p2 where h1 is the high order 8 bits of the internet host address. PASSIVE (PASV) This command requests the server-DTP to "listen" on a data port (which is not its default data port) and to wait for a connection rather than initiate one upon receipt of a transfer command. The response to this command includes the host and port address this server is listening on. REPRESENTATION TYPE (TYPE) The argument specifies the representation type as described in the Section on Data Representation and Storage. Several types take a second parameter. The first parameter is denoted by a single Telnet character, as is the second Format parameter for ASCII and EBCDIC; the second parameter for local byte is a decimal integer to indicate Bytesize. The parameters are separated by a <SP> (Space, ASCII code 32). The following codes are assigned for type: \ / A - ASCII | | N - Non-print |-><-| T - Telnet format effectors E - EBCDIC| | C - Carriage Control (ASA) / \ I - Image L <byte size> - Local byte Byte size
The default representation type is ASCII Non-print. If the Format parameter is changed, and later just the first argument is changed, Format then returns to the Non-print default. FILE STRUCTURE (STRU) The argument is a single Telnet character code specifying file structure described in the Section on Data Representation and Storage. The following codes are assigned for structure: F - File (no record structure) R - Record structure P - Page structure The default structure is File. TRANSFER MODE (MODE) The argument is a single Telnet character code specifying the data transfer modes described in the Section on Transmission Modes. The following codes are assigned for transfer modes: S - Stream B - Block C - Compressed The default transfer mode is Stream. 4.1.3. FTP SERVICE COMMANDS The FTP service commands define the file transfer or the file system function requested by the user. The argument of an FTP service command will normally be a pathname. The syntax of pathnames must conform to server site conventions (with standard defaults applicable), and the language conventions of the control connection. The suggested default handling is to use the last specified device, directory or file name, or the standard default defined for local users. The commands may be in any order except that a "rename from" command must be followed by a "rename to" command and the restart command must be followed by the interrupted service command (e.g., STOR or RETR). The data, when transferred in response to FTP service
commands, shall always be sent over the data connection, except for certain informative replies. The following commands specify FTP service requests: RETRIEVE (RETR) This command causes the server-DTP to transfer a copy of the file, specified in the pathname, to the server- or user-DTP at the other end of the data connection. The status and contents of the file at the server site shall be unaffected. STORE (STOR) This command causes the server-DTP to accept the data transferred via the data connection and to store the data as a file at the server site. If the file specified in the pathname exists at the server site, then its contents shall be replaced by the data being transferred. A new file is created at the server site if the file specified in the pathname does not already exist. STORE UNIQUE (STOU) This command behaves like STOR except that the resultant file is to be created in the current directory under a name unique to that directory. The 250 Transfer Started response must include the name generated. APPEND (with create) (APPE) This command causes the server-DTP to accept the data transferred via the data connection and to store the data in a file at the server site. If the file specified in the pathname exists at the server site, then the data shall be appended to that file; otherwise the file specified in the pathname shall be created at the server site. ALLOCATE (ALLO) This command may be required by some servers to reserve sufficient storage to accommodate the new file to be transferred. The argument shall be a decimal integer representing the number of bytes (using the logical byte size) of storage to be reserved for the file. For files sent with record or page structure a maximum record or page size (in logical bytes) might also be necessary; this is indicated by a decimal integer in a second argument field of
the command. This second argument is optional, but when present should be separated from the first by the three Telnet characters <SP> R <SP>. This command shall be followed by a STORe or APPEnd command. The ALLO command should be treated as a NOOP (no operation) by those servers which do not require that the maximum size of the file be declared beforehand, and those servers interested in only the maximum record or page size should accept a dummy value in the first argument and ignore it. RESTART (REST) The argument field represents the server marker at which file transfer is to be restarted. This command does not cause file transfer but skips over the file to the specified data checkpoint. This command shall be immediately followed by the appropriate FTP service command which shall cause file transfer to resume. RENAME FROM (RNFR) This command specifies the old pathname of the file which is to be renamed. This command must be immediately followed by a "rename to" command specifying the new file pathname. RENAME TO (RNTO) This command specifies the new pathname of the file specified in the immediately preceding "rename from" command. Together the two commands cause a file to be renamed. ABORT (ABOR) This command tells the server to abort the previous FTP service command and any associated transfer of data. The abort command may require "special action", as discussed in the Section on FTP Commands, to force recognition by the server. No action is to be taken if the previous command has been completed (including data transfer). The control connection is not to be closed by the server, but the data connection must be closed. There are two cases for the server upon receipt of this command: (1) the FTP service command was already completed, or (2) the FTP service command is still in progress.
In the first case, the server closes the data connection (if it is open) and responds with a 226 reply, indicating that the abort command was successfully processed. In the second case, the server aborts the FTP service in progress and closes the data connection, returning a 426 reply to indicate that the service request terminated abnormally. The server then sends a 226 reply, indicating that the abort command was successfully processed. DELETE (DELE) This command causes the file specified in the pathname to be deleted at the server site. If an extra level of protection is desired (such as the query, "Do you really wish to delete?"), it should be provided by the user-FTP process. REMOVE DIRECTORY (RMD) This command causes the directory specified in the pathname to be removed as a directory (if the pathname is absolute) or as a subdirectory of the current working directory (if the pathname is relative). See Appendix II. MAKE DIRECTORY (MKD) This command causes the directory specified in the pathname to be created as a directory (if the pathname is absolute) or as a subdirectory of the current working directory (if the pathname is relative). See Appendix II. PRINT WORKING DIRECTORY (PWD) This command causes the name of the current working directory to be returned in the reply. See Appendix II. LIST (LIST) This command causes a list to be sent from the server to the passive DTP. If the pathname specifies a directory or other group of files, the server should transfer a list of files in the specified directory. If the pathname specifies a file then the server should send current information on the file. A null argument implies the user's current working or default directory. The data transfer is over the data connection in type ASCII or type EBCDIC. (The user must
ensure that the TYPE is appropriately ASCII or EBCDIC). Since the information on a file may vary widely from system to system, this information may be hard to use automatically in a program, but may be quite useful to a human user. NAME LIST (NLST) This command causes a directory listing to be sent from server to user site. The pathname should specify a directory or other system-specific file group descriptor; a null argument implies the current directory. The server will return a stream of names of files and no other information. The data will be transferred in ASCII or EBCDIC type over the data connection as valid pathname strings separated by <CRLF> or <NL>. (Again the user must ensure that the TYPE is correct.) This command is intended to return information that can be used by a program to further process the files automatically. For example, in the implementation of a "multiple get" function. SITE PARAMETERS (SITE) This command is used by the server to provide services specific to his system that are essential to file transfer but not sufficiently universal to be included as commands in the protocol. The nature of these services and the specification of their syntax can be stated in a reply to the HELP SITE command. SYSTEM (SYST) This command is used to find out the type of operating system at the server. The reply shall have as its first word one of the system names listed in the current version of the Assigned Numbers document . STATUS (STAT) This command shall cause a status response to be sent over the control connection in the form of a reply. The command may be sent during a file transfer (along with the Telnet IP and Synch signals--see the Section on FTP Commands) in which case the server will respond with the status of the operation in progress, or it may be sent between file transfers. In the latter case, the command may have an argument field. If the argument is a pathname, the command is analogous to the "list" command except that data shall be
transferred over the control connection. If a partial pathname is given, the server may respond with a list of file names or attributes associated with that specification. If no argument is given, the server should return general status information about the server FTP process. This should include current values of all transfer parameters and the status of connections. HELP (HELP) This command shall cause the server to send helpful information regarding its implementation status over the control connection to the user. The command may take an argument (e.g., any command name) and return more specific information as a response. The reply is type 211 or 214. It is suggested that HELP be allowed before entering a USER command. The server may use this reply to specify site-dependent parameters, e.g., in response to HELP SITE. NOOP (NOOP) This command does not affect any parameters or previously entered commands. It specifies no action other than that the server send an OK reply. The File Transfer Protocol follows the specifications of the Telnet protocol for all communications over the control connection. Since the language used for Telnet communication may be a negotiated option, all references in the next two sections will be to the "Telnet language" and the corresponding "Telnet end-of-line code". Currently, one may take these to mean NVT-ASCII and <CRLF>. No other specifications of the Telnet protocol will be cited. FTP commands are "Telnet strings" terminated by the "Telnet end of line code". The command codes themselves are alphabetic characters terminated by the character <SP> (Space) if parameters follow and Telnet-EOL otherwise. The command codes and the semantics of commands are described in this section; the detailed syntax of commands is specified in the Section on Commands, the reply sequences are discussed in the Section on Sequencing of Commands and Replies, and scenarios illustrating the use of commands are provided in the Section on Typical FTP Scenarios. FTP commands may be partitioned as those specifying access-control identifiers, data transfer parameters, or FTP service requests. Certain commands (such as ABOR, STAT, QUIT) may be sent over the control connection while a data transfer is in progress. Some
servers may not be able to monitor the control and data connections simultaneously, in which case some special action will be necessary to get the server's attention. The following ordered format is tentatively recommended: 1. User system inserts the Telnet "Interrupt Process" (IP) signal in the Telnet stream. 2. User system sends the Telnet "Synch" signal. 3. User system inserts the command (e.g., ABOR) in the Telnet stream. 4. Server PI, after receiving "IP", scans the Telnet stream for EXACTLY ONE FTP command. (For other servers this may not be necessary but the actions listed above should have no unusual effect.) 4.2. FTP REPLIES Replies to File Transfer Protocol commands are devised to ensure the synchronization of requests and actions in the process of file transfer, and to guarantee that the user process always knows the state of the Server. Every command must generate at least one reply, although there may be more than one; in the latter case, the multiple replies must be easily distinguished. In addition, some commands occur in sequential groups, such as USER, PASS and ACCT, or RNFR and RNTO. The replies show the existence of an intermediate state if all preceding commands have been successful. A failure at any point in the sequence necessitates the repetition of the entire sequence from the beginning. The details of the command-reply sequence are made explicit in a set of state diagrams below. An FTP reply consists of a three digit number (transmitted as three alphanumeric characters) followed by some text. The number is intended for use by automata to determine what state to enter next; the text is intended for the human user. It is intended that the three digits contain enough encoded information that the user-process (the User-PI) will not need to examine the text and may either discard it or pass it on to the user, as appropriate. In particular, the text may be server-dependent, so there are likely to be varying texts for each reply code. A reply is defined to contain the 3-digit code, followed by Space
<SP>, followed by one line of text (where some maximum line length has been specified), and terminated by the Telnet end-of-line code. There will be cases however, where the text is longer than a single line. In these cases the complete text must be bracketed so the User-process knows when it may stop reading the reply (i.e. stop processing input on the control connection) and go do other things. This requires a special format on the first line to indicate that more than one line is coming, and another on the last line to designate it as the last. At least one of these must contain the appropriate reply code to indicate the state of the transaction. To satisfy all factions, it was decided that both the first and last line codes should be the same. Thus the format for multi-line replies is that the first line will begin with the exact required reply code, followed immediately by a Hyphen, "-" (also known as Minus), followed by text. The last line will begin with the same code, followed immediately by Space <SP>, optionally some text, and the Telnet end-of-line code. For example: 123-First line Second line 234 A line beginning with numbers 123 The last line The user-process then simply needs to search for the second occurrence of the same reply code, followed by <SP> (Space), at the beginning of a line, and ignore all intermediary lines. If an intermediary line begins with a 3-digit number, the Server must pad the front to avoid confusion. This scheme allows standard system routines to be used for reply information (such as for the STAT reply), with "artificial" first and last lines tacked on. In rare cases where these routines are able to generate three digits and a Space at the beginning of any line, the beginning of each text line should be offset by some neutral text, like Space. This scheme assumes that multi-line replies may not be nested. The three digits of the reply each have a special significance. This is intended to allow a range of very simple to very sophisticated responses by the user-process. The first digit denotes whether the response is good, bad or incomplete. (Referring to the state diagram), an unsophisticated user-process will be able to determine its next action (proceed as planned,
redo, retrench, etc.) by simply examining this first digit. A user-process that wants to know approximately what kind of error occurred (e.g. file system error, command syntax error) may examine the second digit, reserving the third digit for the finest gradation of information (e.g., RNTO command without a preceding RNFR). There are five values for the first digit of the reply code: 1yz Positive Preliminary reply The requested action is being initiated; expect another reply before proceeding with a new command. (The user-process sending another command before the completion reply would be in violation of protocol; but server-FTP processes should queue any commands that arrive while a preceding command is in progress.) This type of reply can be used to indicate that the command was accepted and the user-process may now pay attention to the data connections, for implementations where simultaneous monitoring is difficult. The server-FTP process may send at most, one 1yz reply per command. 2yz Positive Completion reply The requested action has been successfully completed. A new request may be initiated. 3yz Positive Intermediate reply The command has been accepted, but the requested action is being held in abeyance, pending receipt of further information. The user should send another command specifying this information. This reply is used in command sequence groups. 4yz Transient Negative Completion reply The command was not accepted and the requested action did not take place, but the error condition is temporary and the action may be requested again. The user should return to the beginning of the command sequence, if any. It is difficult to assign a meaning to "transient", particularly when two distinct sites (Server- and User-processes) have to agree on the interpretation. Each reply in the 4yz category might have a slightly different time value, but the intent is that the
user-process is encouraged to try again. A rule of thumb in determining if a reply fits into the 4yz or the 5yz (Permanent Negative) category is that replies are 4yz if the commands can be repeated without any change in command form or in properties of the User or Server (e.g., the command is spelled the same with the same arguments used; the user does not change his file access or user name; the server does not put up a new implementation.) 5yz Permanent Negative Completion reply The command was not accepted and the requested action did not take place. The User-process is discouraged from repeating the exact request (in the same sequence). Even some "permanent" error conditions can be corrected, so the human user may want to direct his User-process to reinitiate the command sequence by direct action at some point in the future (e.g., after the spelling has been changed, or the user has altered his directory status.) The following function groupings are encoded in the second digit: x0z Syntax - These replies refer to syntax errors, syntactically correct commands that don't fit any functional category, unimplemented or superfluous commands. x1z Information - These are replies to requests for information, such as status or help. x2z Connections - Replies referring to the control and data connections. x3z Authentication and accounting - Replies for the login process and accounting procedures. x4z Unspecified as yet. x5z File system - These replies indicate the status of the Server file system vis-a-vis the requested transfer or other file system action. The third digit gives a finer gradation of meaning in each of the function categories, specified by the second digit. The list of replies below will illustrate this. Note that the text
associated with each reply is recommended, rather than mandatory, and may even change according to the command with which it is associated. The reply codes, on the other hand, must strictly follow the specifications in the last section; that is, Server implementations should not invent new codes for situations that are only slightly different from the ones described here, but rather should adapt codes already defined. A command such as TYPE or ALLO whose successful execution does not offer the user-process any new information will cause a 200 reply to be returned. If the command is not implemented by a particular Server-FTP process because it has no relevance to that computer system, for example ALLO at a TOPS20 site, a Positive Completion reply is still desired so that the simple User-process knows it can proceed with its course of action. A 202 reply is used in this case with, for example, the reply text: "No storage allocation necessary." If, on the other hand, the command requests a non-site-specific action and is unimplemented, the response is 502. A refinement of that is the 504 reply for a command that is implemented, but that requests an unimplemented parameter. 4.2.1 Reply Codes by Function Groups 200 Command okay. 500 Syntax error, command unrecognized. This may include errors such as command line too long. 501 Syntax error in parameters or arguments. 202 Command not implemented, superfluous at this site. 502 Command not implemented. 503 Bad sequence of commands. 504 Command not implemented for that parameter.
110 Restart marker reply. In this case, the text is exact and not left to the particular implementation; it must read: MARK yyyy = mmmm Where yyyy is User-process data stream marker, and mmmm server's equivalent marker (note the spaces between markers and "="). 211 System status, or system help reply. 212 Directory status. 213 File status. 214 Help message. On how to use the server or the meaning of a particular non-standard command. This reply is useful only to the human user. 215 NAME system type. Where NAME is an official system name from the list in the Assigned Numbers document. 120 Service ready in nnn minutes. 220 Service ready for new user. 221 Service closing control connection. Logged out if appropriate. 421 Service not available, closing control connection. This may be a reply to any command if the service knows it must shut down. 125 Data connection already open; transfer starting. 225 Data connection open; no transfer in progress. 425 Can't open data connection. 226 Closing data connection. Requested file action successful (for example, file transfer or file abort). 426 Connection closed; transfer aborted. 227 Entering Passive Mode (h1,h2,h3,h4,p1,p2). 230 User logged in, proceed. 530 Not logged in. 331 User name okay, need password. 332 Need account for login. 532 Need account for storing files.
150 File status okay; about to open data connection. 250 Requested file action okay, completed. 257 "PATHNAME" created. 350 Requested file action pending further information. 450 Requested file action not taken. File unavailable (e.g., file busy). 550 Requested action not taken. File unavailable (e.g., file not found, no access). 451 Requested action aborted. Local error in processing. 551 Requested action aborted. Page type unknown. 452 Requested action not taken. Insufficient storage space in system. 552 Requested file action aborted. Exceeded storage allocation (for current directory or dataset). 553 Requested action not taken. File name not allowed. 4.2.2 Numeric Order List of Reply Codes 110 Restart marker reply. In this case, the text is exact and not left to the particular implementation; it must read: MARK yyyy = mmmm Where yyyy is User-process data stream marker, and mmmm server's equivalent marker (note the spaces between markers and "="). 120 Service ready in nnn minutes. 125 Data connection already open; transfer starting. 150 File status okay; about to open data connection.
200 Command okay. 202 Command not implemented, superfluous at this site. 211 System status, or system help reply. 212 Directory status. 213 File status. 214 Help message. On how to use the server or the meaning of a particular non-standard command. This reply is useful only to the human user. 215 NAME system type. Where NAME is an official system name from the list in the Assigned Numbers document. 220 Service ready for new user. 221 Service closing control connection. Logged out if appropriate. 225 Data connection open; no transfer in progress. 226 Closing data connection. Requested file action successful (for example, file transfer or file abort). 227 Entering Passive Mode (h1,h2,h3,h4,p1,p2). 230 User logged in, proceed. 250 Requested file action okay, completed. 257 "PATHNAME" created. 331 User name okay, need password. 332 Need account for login. 350 Requested file action pending further information. 421 Service not available, closing control connection. This may be a reply to any command if the service knows it must shut down. 425 Can't open data connection. 426 Connection closed; transfer aborted. 450 Requested file action not taken. File unavailable (e.g., file busy). 451 Requested action aborted: local error in processing. 452 Requested action not taken. Insufficient storage space in system.
500 Syntax error, command unrecognized. This may include errors such as command line too long. 501 Syntax error in parameters or arguments. 502 Command not implemented. 503 Bad sequence of commands. 504 Command not implemented for that parameter. 530 Not logged in. 532 Need account for storing files. 550 Requested action not taken. File unavailable (e.g., file not found, no access). 551 Requested action aborted: page type unknown. 552 Requested file action aborted. Exceeded storage allocation (for current directory or dataset). 553 Requested action not taken. File name not allowed.